In years past, TCEA had developed a reputation as a conference that didn’t really “get going” until about Wednesday. Sure, there was some programming on Monday and a little more on Tuesday, but since they Exhibit Hall didn’t open untilWednesday, many folks waited until late Tuesday or even Wednesday before making the trek to Central Texas.

But that’s all changed now. With Academies on Monday and Tuesday for teachers interested in learning more about Google, Math, ELA, Social Studies, Science, Robotics, iPads, Campus Leadership, or Promethean (and maybe even a few more that I missed!), you’re hard-pressed to say that TCEA doesn’t begin until Wednesday. Not only can you attend one of these great, highly-focused academies, there is a full slate of sessions on nearly any topic you can think of. Seriously, think of one right now. Got one in your mind?

Yep, there’s a session for that.

The Digital Square (my favorite hangout) is absolutely electric with the laughs, hugs, and even selfies that are happening. To be sure, it’s not just a social gathering, there are even sessions taking place! Today was the choose-a-different-name-every-year event formerly known as Edubloggercon, now known as LearnEd, featuring some of the most preeminent names in EdTech. For example, where else can you hear from Scott Floyd, Tim Holt, Stuart Burt, Matt Gomez, Jon Samuelson, Zach Snow, Carolyn Foote, Paul R. Wood, and more?

One of the best creations to come from the Digital Square? New hashtags. Seriously, it’s hard to keep up with all the new hashtags, but easily my favorite is #selfieswithstuart where folks in the Digital Square are taking selfies (some are VERY creative) with Stuart Burt. After all, conferences should be fun! Especially before the “real” conference starts, right? 😉

 

 

Screen Shot 2014-02-03 at 9.46.15 AMGreg Garner is currently an Educational Technologist at Eanes ISD in Austin, TX and is our “teacher blogger on location” for the week- covering all the great events, sessions and learning happening at the TCEA Conference.  Follow him on Twitter at @classroom_tech and find him at the conference to say hi in person.

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